Two weeks in the blink of an eye

Work and my son’s maths have invaded my private life and I find I have no time or energy for my writing at the moment… and suddenly two weeks have flown by. That’s okay – work brings us the money to pay the bills, and maths exercises my brain and keeps me close to my son.

Notwithstanding this – and here I must digress to say that I had lots of fun explaining where this word comes from to one of my students, who insisted it must be German, because Germans love stringing lots of words together. In fact, he was not that far off, as I discovered after a lot of poking around (non obstante being far too obvious) – I have completely re-written the first three chapters of The Book (wot I shall call TGU from now on, for reasons that will only be made clear to those who eventually read the story) in first person limited, and next I will re-write them again in third person limited. Having thus rendered it using three different viewpoints, I’ll decide what works best. I cannot quite believe I’m do this, nor that I am enjoying the task, but the feeling has been growing in me that I need to make more effort to put my readers in touch with my characters. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Talking of viewpoint, I bought a science fiction novel mainly because of its supposedly successful treatment of viewpoint changes, or ‘head-hopping’, and have found it – so far – very enjoyable and well-written. Any sci-fi fans should investigate Marko Kloos (click on the book cover). I also read that one story everyone insists one must read as a good example of third person objective viewpoint is Hills Like White Elephants by Ernest Hemingway. So I did – and I have to say I found that one of its best qualities is probably that it’s short. Lessons there, I feel…

The weather here is getting hotter, so it is probably as well to be inside working, but we have been whisked away on two weekends in a row by our Friends Jenny and Marcus – away, to swim in the cool (make that bloody freezing) streams in the mountains surrounding Coimbra. It was so nice, we forgot to take photographs – sorry.

I am on my way out now in this nice weather for a morning cycle along the byways of Aeminium (well that’s what the Romans called Coimbra… and by the way, did you know the city of Lisbon is older than that of Rome?), and across the Mondego. I was inspired to do so in part by Ailish Sinclair’s lovely post Finding Loudon Wood Stone Circle. My ride will not, on the face of it, be of quite the same rustic quality, but it is always good to get out and find some inner peace wherever you can. (Edit – a couple of pics below).

Footbridge over the Mondego, looking east, or upriver…
…and looking west towards the town.

Right – back to work.

Enjoy your week.

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